unusual floor drain backup issue
vacant home since April, near St Paul, Mn
finally closed on it March 1 for my son, as he got deployed in July
have been in and out of the house for 5 months doing fix-it tickets(mainly exterior) to appease loan requirements - minimum plumbing usage
temp has finally been in the 40's the last week or so
have friends of his living there as caretakers now consistantly using plumbing - toilet, shower, washer, etc
saw water in basement today and floor drain was full/plugged/etc
removed cover and (literally) jabbed down the hole with a sharp stick, thinking it was clogged
went down about 6" and started hitting "something"
few more whacks and water started coming UP!! and it seemed I was chipping ice
so I stopped and got a beer and thought about it
talked to some friends and they said get some heavy duty drain cleaners and pour it down there and was going to go do that but then I started wondering if maybe the problem isn't so much a clog as it may be because the plumbing hasn't been used properly for 9 months
not being a plumber, I guess I don't know if NOT using the plumbing can cause a problem as much as using it too much
so before I proceed I was wondering if any pro's ( or anyone else obviously) had any ideas or answers to the question - could this be due to lack of use over the winter and now because of the thaw it's happening - and, if so, what is the best approach? any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.